HE modern methods of
ring manufacture in the United States are far different from those of
the past, due to an endeavor to keep pace with the growth of the
country and with an increase in production. Owing to the introduction
of modern systems, great quantities of an article can now be sold,
which, though not preserving the character of the finest handiwork,
yet cost so much less to produce that they can now be offered at
greatly reduced prices.
the manufacture of the modern ring, there is first prepared a design,
or even a model. The initial process consists in cutting this object
exactly as it will appear when it is finished,—or such parts of it as
are made by measure,—on what is known as a " hub " made of soft steel.
When the design is finally completed, it is hardened by heating and
then by dipping into water, oil or other solution. When the metal hub
has been hardened, it is forced into a mass of soft steel by great
pressure, usually hydraulic, producing a die, as it is termed, on which
all the ornamentation is the reverse of that on the desired object.
This die is then hardened.
die is placed on the stand of the drop press, the upperweight strikes
it and forces the metal into it; this requires from four or five to
seven or eight operations. Each time the metal is struck it is
annealed, then re-struck and again annealed, until the ring is ready
for trimming. This trimming removes all the superfluous metal, and the
ring is then in condition for the jeweller to bend it into a complete